The 5-minute Interview: Helen McCrory, Actress

'I grew up in Africa and I love to dance to its music'
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The Independent Online

McCrory, 39, is best known for her theatre roles, in particular playing Rosalind in Shakespeare's 'As You Like It', for which she received an Olivier Award nomination. She has appeared in a number of high-profile films including 'Interview With A Vampire', 'The Queen' and – most recently – 'Flashbacks Of A Fool' alongside Daniel Craig. She is currently filming 'Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince', in which she plays Narcissa Malfoy and starring in the play Rosmersholm which opens at the Almeida Theatre on 15 May.

If I weren't talking to you right now I'd be ...

In the back of a car driving to the Harry Potter set, except my driver got lost so I'm here on the street with my cigarette, thinking, "I'm late for work".

A phrase I use too often ...

Would be either "Sorry, I'm running late" or, as my little boy is just five months old, "When did he eat last"?

I wish people would take more notice of ...

Litter in the street and general politeness. It is the lack of graciousness that makes me very depressed. People are not considerate of others. They tend not to consider themselves as all living together, but see themselves only as individuals.

The most surprising thing to happen to me was ...

Finding out that I was pregnant when my first child was six months old. That was genuinely surprising.

A common misperception of me is ...

That I am tall. That's quite boring, isn't it? Everyone says that I am minute when they see me.

I am not a politician but ...

If I were in politics I'd make both left and right sit down and make good decisions about national health. It's a huge problem and it is something we all should be part of. Also, I wouldn't do what most politicians do with the media. Everyone thinks that to be a great politician what counts is to come across well in the public eye, and that's not necessarily true. We have had prime ministers in the past who didn't come across well, but they were great prime ministers.

I'm very good at ...

Eating. I love everything and anything. I really love my food. My favourite thing is artichokes. I am not so much interested in desserts or chocolate, though. I also like to cook with my husband Damian.

I'm very bad at ...

Stopping eating. Also time management. I always think it takes five minutes to go across London.

The ideal night out is ...

Dancing somewhere with my husband. African live dance, of course, because I grew up in Africa and I love its music.

In weak moments I ...

Take myself off and spend some time completely by myself.

In another life I'd have been ...

A wife and a mother, because that's what I really am. Of course, that's different from what people know me for.

The best age to be is ...

Always now. Every time, at any point of my life, I think now is always the best age to be.

In a nutshell, my philosophy is ...

Whoever dares, wins.

Antonio Fabrizio

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